Federation of Indian American Christian Organizations (FIACONA) Pray for a Persecuted Church
 Federation of Indian American Christian Organizations (FIACONA)Pray for a Persecuted Church

Latest News

IChristian Father of Two Killed in Jharkhand State, India Tribal Adivasis opposed his conversion, raped his mother-in-law..

July 4 Morningstar News

When Kande Munda heard a knock on his door one night last month, the Christian father of two knew it was likely the same thugs and their colleagues in his area of Jharkhand, India who had harassed him for nearly four years.
They were particularly upset that Munda had reported them to police for a 2018 assault on his mother-in-law. The assailants, followers of tribal Adivasi religion, had opposed her conversion to Christianity by labelling her Christian prayers as “witchcraft” and gang-raping her.... ... 

42-y-o mother in UP receives threats from her siblings for following Christianity, worries for her two sons. 

June 30 ChristianityToday

Angry relatives in Uttar Pradesh bang the door of a Christian family late at night and threaten to murder them if they did not renounce their faith in Christ.
On June 18, at around 11 p.m., a 12-year-old boy heard his uncle and five other drunken men pounding at his house door in Ram Ganga Vihar area of Moradabad threatening to kill him and his 20-year-old brother. Molly James, 42, the terrified mother who was with the two boys when the angry assailants were at the door, ...

Jharkhand, two Christians accused of proselytism; Hindu radicals vandalize a Pentecostal church

June 25 Asia News

A mob damaged the building still under construction and destroyed a cross. Police cordoned off the area and arrested the two Christian teachers. Sajan K George: "False accusations, intimidation of Christians for political reasons".
A Pentecostal church was vandalized by Hindu radicals after two Christian teachers were accused of proselytizing. The incident occurred on June 22 in the Dhanbad (Jharkhand) district. The mob damaged the building which is still under construction...

Latest News

Coronavirus: Secrecy surrounds India PM Narendra Modi's '$1bn' Covid-19 fund.

June 29 BBC

A fund set up by Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi to fight Covid-19 is now mired in controversy and concern over an alleged lack of transparency, writes the BBC's Geeta Pandey in Delhi.
On 27 March, just days after India began a country-wide lockdown to halt the spread of the coronavirus, Narendra Modi set up the Prime Minister's Citizen Assistance and Relief in Emergency Situations Fund. The PM Cares Fund, for short.
A day later, Mr Modi appealed to "all Indians" to donate.
"It is my appeal to my fellow Indians, kindly contribute to the PM-Cares Fund," he tweeted, telling the nation...."..

Police Release Suspect in Attempted Killing of Pastor in India:

Jun 28 Morningstar News

Official from Hindu nationalist party pressures officers, sources say.
Under pressure from an official in the ruling Hindu nationalist political party, police in Uttar Pradesh state, India have released without charges a suspect in the attempted killing of a pastor last month, sources said.
“When we entered the police station for the identification process, the attacker was treated like a VIP, not as a criminal,” Deepak Kumar, brother-in-law of the pastor, told Morning Star News. “He was released the same day, even after we insisted that he is the one.” Four men ambushed 39-year-old pastor Dinesh Kumar as he left Mohiuddinpur ....

Indian bishops decry custodial deaths in Tamil Nadu Catholic bishops

June 28 Matters India

(FIACONA considers this incident as a police brutality agaisnt innocnet civiliance of all faiths. In this particular case the victims happen to be Christians. Hindu and Muslim civilians also count as victims of these  accused police officers): 
The Catholic Bishops’ Conference of India “condemns most strongly the brutal assaults on P Jayaraj and his son J Fenix while in police custody in Tuticorin, which resulted in their deaths,” says a press statement signed by conference president Cardinal Oswald Gracias.
Tuticorin is some 600 km south of Chennai, the state capital.
The bishops’ Conference of India “condemns most strongly the  ....

Latest News

Pastor dragged, beaten by 150-strong mob while praying for sick.

June 28 Christian Post

In one of the eight attacks on Christians since the COVID-19 lockdown was partially lifted in India two weeks ago, a mob of about 150 people in the southern state of Telangana dragged a pastor into the street and beat him while he was praying for a sick person.
“They kicked me like they would kick a football,” Pastor Suresh Rao, a church planter, told the U.S.-based Christian persecution watchdog International Christian Concern about the attack on him in Kolonguda village last Sunday.
“They dragged me into the street and pushed me to the ground,” Rao added. “There, they started to trample on me. They tore my clothes, kicked me all over my body, and punched my left eye. I have sustained a serious eye injury as a result of a blood clot.”.... 

Religious conversion ban threatening Christians may expand to 9th state. 

June 28 Christian Today

The Hindu nationalist government of the northern state of Haryana has pledged to enact a law to regulate religious conversions that would lead to the arrest of Christians who share their faith, talk about Heaven or Hell, or perform charity work for lower caste Hindus.
The draconian "anti-conversion" laws, termed as Freedom of Religion Acts, presume that Christian workers "force" or give financial benefits to Hindus to convert them to Christianity.
Manohar Lal Khattar, Haryana's chief minister, said this week his administration would introduce a bill against religious conversion by force, marriages, or through inducement for the specific purpose of adopting a religion, the U.S.-based persecution watchdog  ....

Coronavirus will create new poverty in India

June 22 Asia News

About 25 million migrant workers have left the cities for their rural villages, where all cannot find work. The pandemic could create 354 million new poor people. The Church should organise people so that they can participate in decision-making processes.
We, the urban dwellers have been enjoying the roads, flyovers, stadiums, and metros among many other advantages, all these years. We wake up every morning to see someone bring to our doorstep milk, newspaper, vegetables and many other necessities of life. These ‘city makers’ who built the luxury apartments in which we live, the schools for our children, the hospitals for our treatment are migrant labourers. In the last few days, we have seen the images of thousands of migrant labourers and   ...

Latest News

With Harsh Mander named in Delhi riots chargesheet, Indian democracy has slipped into a dark hole.

June 20, The Scroll

He gave a speech that called for love and non-violence. Government agencies consider this an act of provocation.
The life of Mander, an administrative officer, Indian head of an international organisation and head of self-established institutions and campaigns, has been a crusader against violence. He has dedicated himself to unveiling the various faces of violence in our society, showing it to those who turn their faces away, working towards systemic changes using the state machinery and legal system, and ensuring the longevity of these initiatives by creating an environment of legal and social awareness. This is an example of a life  ...” 

Hard-line Modi supporters Threaten to Kill Christian’s Children in Uttar Pradesh, India

June 19MorningstarNews 

Pastor beaten unconscious in separate attack.
His father away from home due in part to coronavirus travel restrictions, a 12-year-old boy in Uttar Pradesh, India heard relatives angry at his family for refusing to renounce Christ pounding on the door late last night (June 18).
“It was past 11’o clock in the night when we heard them banging on the door and shouting,” he said. “Five men along with my uncle were standing at the door issuing threats that they would murder my brother and me.”
His terrified mother in the Ram Ganga Vihar area of Moradabad told her two sons, the other age 20, to run to the police .....

Peace rally demands justice for murdered Christian teen A peaceful rally of Christians in Odisha, India

June 18 Matters India 

Suspected Modi supporters on June 4 killed Samaru Madkami in Kenduguda, a village in Malkangiri district.
More than 350 people attended the rally and submitted a memorandum to Ramprasad Nag, Inspector In-Charge of Malkangiri. ‘I assure you to fulfil the demands made by you,” he assured the Christians.
Anti-Christian groups used to harass three families who had become Christians three years ago. They had complained to the police.
At midnight on June 4 , miscreants kidnapped Samaru and brutally murdered him.
The memorandum pointed out that   ...

Latest News

Christian families in Jharkhand hold on to faith despite persecution:

June 16, ChristianToday

Two incidents where Christians in Jharkhand were harassed and persecuted by radical Hindu nationalists last month points at the increasing number of violence against Christians in the country even during the pandemic.
On May 31, Pastor Jaiwant Tirkey from New Hulhnda village was attacked by radical Hindus who justified the assault by accusing the Christian leader of violating the COVID-19 lockdown.
Pastor Tirkey is an independant pastor and was assaulted while distributing COVID-19 food relief.
"We opened the church because we wanted to use the premises to prepare meals for migrant workers," Pastor Tirkey told International Christian Concern (ICC). "I was there along with a few other volunteers preparing and serving breakfast when all of a sudden, a man with an iron rod kicked in"....

Hindu radicals burn a church in Chengalpattu, Tamil Nadu India

June 18 ChristianToday

Reverend Ramesh Jebaraj, who runs the church, told International Christian Concern (ICC) that he was shocked to look at the church engulfed with flames and smoke.
"I was broken, and it was so painful, there was absolutely no way to save anything from inside the church. The church structure, instruments, and furniture inside the church are ten years of hard labor," he explained.
Though the reason for the blaze was not apparent, Rev Jebaraj sees it as a premeditated act as he has been receiving threats to stop all Christians practices is his "Real Peace Gospel Church" since the time it started 10 years ago.
The Christian leader told local media that "This appears to be a planned attack. We don't suspect anyone in particular. People of all faiths come here to pray. Someone may have done it out of jealousy, but we forgive them.".....

Three Christian families in Chhattisgarh remain displaced after brutal attack from Modi Hindus. 

June 9 Christianity Today

Three Christian families in Chhattisgarh remain displaced after radical Hindu nationalists attacked them in the middle of the night leaving the Christians severely injured and homeless.
The incident took place on May 20 in Sukma district's Devkhumpli village, where the Christian families were brutally attacked with sticks and sharp stones by a mob of around 30 radicals. The radicals threatened to kill the Christians if they refused to recant their faith.
"It happened around 11:00 in the night," Hadme Markam told International Christian Concern (ICC). "I woke up from my sleep when I heard a big bang on my door. I was very scared because my husband was away for work that night."
"Before I realized what was happening, a mob broke down the door, rushed into the house, and started to beat "  ...

STATEMENT

 

The Federation of Indian American Christian Organizations Welcomes the The US State Department's Annual Religious Freedom Report.

 

June 10, 2020, Washington, DC. The Federation of Indian American Christian Organizations (FIACONA) welcomes the Annual Religious Freedom Report by State Department Released today. 

 

According to the US State Department, “ there were reports of religiously motivated killings, assaults, riots, discrimination, vandalism, and actions restricting the right of individuals to practice and speak about their religious beliefs. According to the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) data, 7,484 incidents of communal violence took place between 2008 and 2017 in which more than 1,100 people were killed”.

 

FIACONA finds the list of incidents affecting the right of the people to believe and practice their faiths as reported to be accurate though there are a few more thousand such incidents that have taken place in India during the reporting period.

 

The fact that India prides herself as a democratic state makes it even more critical for her to behave like one respecting the fundamental rights of every citizen and not undermine any sections of the society.

 

The President of FIACONA Mr. Koshy George said, “I am worried that the persecution of Christians and other religious minorities continues even during the Coronavirus lockdown and Prime Minister Modi’s silence on these critical issues is very disheartening.”

 

Mr. John Prabhudoss, the Chairman of FIACONA thanked Secretary Pompeo, Ambassador Sam Brownback and his team for their work on behalf of those persecuted for their faith.

 

It is becoming more and more common knowledge that non-state actors like the militias affiliated with Mr. Modi’s BJP government are increasingly violent in the past few years. Now they enjoy the protection of the government also. FIACONA strongly recommends that the US government must take the lead in sanctioning non-state actors and specific individuals in India who advocate and/or perpetrate violent acts against Christian and other religious minorities.

 

FIACONA also thanked the Trump Administration for its focus and prioritizing Religious Freedom issues in its foreign policy approach. FIACONA hopes that the President understands the serious threat to the state of India and the US interests from the Hindu nationalist movement.

 

The United States and the International community must understand that only an equitable, peaceful, and progressive society that is not affected by internal civil unrest will become a productive partner in trade and security. A religiously volatile and socially disturbed society in India will be detrimental to the interest of the international community not just in South Asia but across the Indian Ocean Corridor and beyond.

 

FIACONA asks the International governments, especially the industrialized nations to tread very cautiously in endorsing or encouraging nationalist forces in the name of the Hindu faith in India. 

 

The Report rleased by the Depart met of State could be accessed here

 

For Media Inquiries, please contact,

John Prabhudoss: john@fiacona.org

Koshy George: president@fiacona.org

Latest News

A pastor in Uttar Pradesh, India falls unconscious after unidentified people beat him.

June 9 ChristianToday

Radical Hindu nationalists brutally beat a pastor returning home from a prayer meeting in Uttar Pradesh's Mau district on May 28.
A group of unidentified individuals on motorcycles hit pastor Dinesh Kumar with sticks and the blows on his head rendered him unconscious.
Pastor Kumar's wife, Mamta, told International Christian Concern (ICC) that she was "screaming out loud" when she saw her husband.
"My mind went blank and I had no words. I thought something fatal took place looking at him with no movement."
"I remembered he used to tell me, 'I am in the ministry and committed to taking the Gospel to the people. I know the cost and some time it may be my life'," Mamta explained. ...” 

Christian families in Chattisgarh, India banned from burying their dead 

June 8 Christian today

Villagers in the east-central state of Chhattisgarh are not allowing Christians to bury their dead until they pay fines for not taking part in Hindu festivals and rituals. Attacks on the minority community in India continue despite the COVID-19 lockdown.
Christians faced stiff opposition to burying their dead in three separate incidents in the districts of Bastar and Dantewada in Chhattisgarh state last month, Alliance Defending Freedom India reported.
The Christians were told to make "restitution" for not partaking in or giving donations for religious rituals in those villages for all the years gone by, and pay an additional fine before their dead would be allowed to be buried.
"It is a terrible and unimaginable thing.....

Police Unresponsive or Hostile toward Christians Beaten in Jharkhand, India

June 8 Morningstar

Police in Jharkhand, India refused to register a complaint about an attack that sent Christians to the hospital for treatment, while officers in another area falsely accused the victims’ relatives in an assault that left a woman unconscious, sources said.
A mob of about 400 animists of the tribal Sarna religion tore down parts of a church building under construction in Budhakaman village, West Singhbhum District of Jharkhand state, on May 10 and attacked Christians at the site, according to Suman Sinku, wife of the church pastor.
“They abused the Christians present there in extremely derogatory language,” Sinku told Morning Star News. “They held Suraj Chatomba and punched his jaws and back. The assailants ...

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